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Tate & Lyle and Cryptobiotix’s breakthrough ex-vivo* study shows that sucralose does not impact the gut microbiota, while other low and no calorie sweeteners have potentially beneficial health effects

A new, first-of-its-kind study has identified unique and potentially beneficial interactions between certain low and no calorie sweeteners, including stevia, and the human gut microbiota. Tate & Lyle PLC, a world leader in ingredient solutions for healthier food and drink, partnered with Cryptobiotix, pioneers in preclinical gastrointestinal research, on the study.

Dr. Davide Risso, molecular biology specialist and Tate & Lyle’s Head of Nutrition Research, led the project to explore the potential impact of certain low and no calorie sweeteners on the gut environment in both healthy individuals and those with type 2 diabetes. The research involved taking samples from co-living adults consuming a similar diet – to lower the potential variation introduced by differences in long-term diet, a major driver of microbiota composition. The doses of low and no calorie sweeteners used were based on actual intakes, regulations and amounts that are generally included in foods and beverages during different timepoints.

Results from the pre-clinical study, published in the leading peer reviewed, open-access journal the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, found that some of the studied low calorie and no calorie sweeteners had no impact on the gut microbiota, while others had potential beneficial health effects.

Using Cryptobiotix’s cutting-edge SIFR® (“cipher”) technology to recreate the gut environment outside of the human body, the research partners found that sweeteners, such as sucralose, do not impact the microbial composition of the gut. Furthermore, other sweeteners, including stevia, have a beneficial impact on the gut microbiota as they were found to be easily fermented and increase the density of certain health-supporting bacteria, with the production of short-chain fatty acids.

The study adds to the strong scientific evidence demonstrating the beneficial role low and no calorie sweeteners can play when used as a part of a balanced diet. Assessments of additional low and no calorie sweeteners, including allulose and erythritol, are being completed and details will be shared in due course.

Dr. Davide Risso, Tate & Lyle’s Head of Nutrition Research, said:
“In this study, the low and no calorie sweeteners we have assessed are shown to have either no impact on the gut microbiota or to offer potential health benefits beyond their established sugar and calorie reduction benefits. Human clinical trials will be required to confirm the potential health benefits. At Tate & Lyle, we’re committed to advancing understanding around the role of low and no calorie sweeteners in the diet and sharing knowledge in this emerging field as a purpose-led, science-driven company.”

Dr Pieter Van den Abbeele, Cryptobiotix’s Chief Scientific Officer, said:
“Cryptobiotix was founded with the ambition of providing accurate insights into the impact and behaviour of ingredients in relation to the gut microbiome. This study provides much-needed evidence to consider the potential benefits of sweeteners individually, rather than as a uniform whole. The robustness and validation work that went into the SIFR® technology used, allowed us to pinpoint specific health-promoting pathways in relation to specific low and no calorie sweeteners.”

*In ex vivo studies, living tissues are directly taken from a living organism and studied in a laboratory with minimal alterations to the organism’s natural conditions.

Euromed’s natural ingredient Pomanox® shows potential to help reduce food intake

According to a recently published clinical study by the department of Dietetics, Nutrition and Biological Sciences, those supplementing with Euromed’s natural extract Pomanox® showed significantly lower levels of hunger and a desire to eat, as well as higher levels of satiety, compared to a placebo group.

In the preliminary, independent, placebo-controlled study conducted at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh1, twenty-eight healthy subjects were given either three-week supplementation with Pomanox® or a placebo. During week three, satiety parameters were determined on a testing day after participants ingested breakfast and lunch with pomegranate juice (PJ). The results suggest that subjects in the Pomanox® group with the PJ preload were generally more satisfied than those given the placebo. Participants were also less hungry after Pomanox® intake with PJ during the meal than those who consumed placebo juice and capsules. Scores from the visual analogue scales (VAS), which record subjective sensations, showed significantly lower levels of hunger and a desire to eat, as well as higher levels of fullness and satisfaction, thus greater levels of satiety in participants consuming Pomanox® with PJ, compared to the placebo. These participants also liked the smell of the meal significantly more than the placebo group. Interestingly, the consumption of pomegranate extract was associated with a significantly lower amount of food intake during the satiety session compared with the placebo group.

While preliminary, these findings confirm the appetite-regulating effect of polyphenol-rich extracts reported in previous studies, suggesting possible novel new approaches to reducing risk factors for obesity and compulsive eating, and providing more enjoyable meals while dieting.

Andrea Zangara, Scientific Marketing Manager at Euromed, says: “We are very pleased to see these promising results, as they further support the efficacy and safety of Pomanox®, expanding its numerous evidence-based health applications to include weight management and behavioural support. Pomanox® is available in different formats and strengths, and extracted using safe and eco-friendly, water-only technologies (Pure-Hydro Process®) as with all the other ingredients in our line of Mediterranean Fruit and Vegetable Extracts™. Their production is vertically integrated as they originate from selected fruits grown in the Mediterranean region – close to our dedicated manufacturing plant and in accordance with strict and transparent quality control protocols. In summary, they are ideal for inclusion in premium dietary supplements, functional foods and pharmaceuticals.”